Numbers are fascinating things that tell amazing stories.
The Bible is filled with numerical patterns
which reveal God’s work with men, countries, and kingdoms.
Nine is a number of completion.
Seventeen is victory and overcoming the enemy.
Forty is the Biblical number for trials, testing, or the fulfillment of a generation.
Pastor Chris and I have worked together at NorthPoint for nine years.
He began as my Associate, and for the past few years has been my ministry partner.
If you spoke with one of us, you were speaking with both of us.
Karen and I began at NorthPoint in October of 1995.
We have ministered together for twenty-one years.
We have worked through more challenges
than we can possibly remember.
And we have also been blessed to experience amazing
joy, pride, and satisfaction in ministry.
I was baptized in October of 1977.
So 2017 marks my 40th year in the Christian faith.
A significant number of completion for a sixty-one-year-old pastor
who began at NorthPoint when he was forty years old,
and is approaching his twenty-one-year anniversary.
I share this crazy collection of numbers with you as a way to prepare to say
that on January 1, 2017 I will be stepping down as a Pastor at NorthPoint.
It’s time to pass the baton of leadership to the next generation.
Together, we have worked through trials, completed seasons of ministry,
seen some amazing things come to completion,
and now you are entering a new and powerful season of victory.
Pastor Chris, the Board, and I have been praying
and seeking God’s will for many months.
This past week my way forward became very clear.
After much prayer and soul searching I knew what needed to be done!
I want to say how much I love and appreciate my wife
for standing and serving with me for the past 38 years.
I love my precious son and his family.
I love watching his passion and vision grow day by day.
I love and respect the members of our Ministry Board for wrestling deeply
with the financial realities of our ministry.
Last but not least I want to thank you,
and say I love you to the precious people of NorthPoint.
Many of you are new to this church.
Some of you were hear twenty-one years ago when I began.
You are in a great church
with great leaders and a great future.
You are in a special place where God is on the move.
And the best is yet to come!
In the weeks ahead your Ministry Board
will begin the process of raising up your next Lead Pastor.
They have some awesome thoughts which I fully support.
For now, I look forward to my next three months of ministry with you,
and covet your prayers for the next forty years of Karen’s and my life and ministry.
I love you, and thank you for the privilege of serving with you!